Our mission at Soapbox Cincinnati is to Connect PEOPLE to PLACE.
Publisher: Patrice Watson
IMG publications leverage the power of solutions-based journalism and narrative storytelling in partnership with community-based leadership coalitions to increase attachment to place – a foundational element to inclusive economic growth – while delivering community response to local media contraction.
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Founded in 2008, Soapbox is published by Issue Media Group, whose publications are supported by underwriting and partnerships with local businesses, civic institutions, community funds, nonprofits and foundations that support and expand our coverage of community and economic development, social innovation, city building and place making. Learn more about our underwriting policy here and commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion here.
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As Issue Media Group publisher for Soapbox Cincinnati, NKY thrives, and Hub Springfield, Patrice Watson manages revenue and audience development working with multiple editorial teams, coalitions, advisories and underwriters to implement projects and achieve goals. In 2010, she launched Raise Your Share consulting for digital and social media to assist nonprofits and small businesses to implement new media to grow revenue and audience. Patrice joined IMG in 2016. Her offline career includes Emmis Communications publisher at Cincinnati Magazine
and 25 years in radio sales and management for Clear Channel, Jacor Communications, American Media/DKM and Taft. Patrice lives in North Avondale. Follow her on Twitter @patricewatson10
Chief Advocate & Instigator: Eric Avner
Eric is the Vice President and Senior Program Manager — Community Development for the Carol Ann & Ralph V. Haile, Jr. Foundation
. From 2014-2019, Avner ran People's Liberty which focused on changing Cincinnati by uncovering and investing in great people. He was associate director of the Cincinnati Business Committee, that venerable group of CEOs representing Cincinnati's 30 largest employers. And prior to that, while guiding Newport's downtown revitalization, he led the effort to create the Purple People Bridge. Most importantly, Eric spent 16 months meeting, discussing, planning and plotting to get Soapbox Media
launched back in 2008. Now, when he and his bowtie aren't out instigating for some way to grow the entrepreneurial ecosystem, Eric keeps busy serving on local and regional boards including Cincinnati Development Fund, Catalytic Development Fund of Northern Kentucky, ArtWorks Cincinnati, and Philanthropy Ohio, and sits on the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland's Community Advisory Committee.
A boomerang Cincinnatian (he lived here in the late '70s, left, and returned to town in 1996), Eric also takes pride in his dual US/Canadian citizenship ... eh. Eric and his wife reside in bucolic Walnut Hills after several years in a downtown loft.
Here are some of the other Issue Media Group city and regional publications across our network:
- Model D and Metromode in Detroit
- FreshWater in Cleveland
- 83 Degrees in Tampa Bay
- High Ground in Memphis
- Rapid Growth in Grand Rapids, Mich.
- Concentrate in Ann Arbor, Mich.
- Capital Gains in Lansing, Mich.
- Second Wave Network Michigan (including Midland, Mt. Pleasant, Bay City, Port Huron, Upper Peninsula, Flint, Kalamazoo, and SW Michigan)
- Input in Fort Wayne
- NKY thrives in Northern Kentucky
- The Lakeshore in Western Michigan
- Hub Springfield in Springfield, OH
- Rural Innovation Exchange throughout Michigan